Genesis 11:27-28:19 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
II. The Story of the Ancestors of Israel
Terah. 27 These are the descendants of Terah.[a] Terah begot Abram, Nahor, and Haran, and Haran begot Lot. 28 Haran died before Terah his father, in his native land, in Ur of the Chaldeans.[b] 29 Abram and Nahor took wives; the name of Abram’s wife was Sarai,[c] and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milcah, daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah and Iscah. 30 Sarai was barren; she had no child.
31 Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot, son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and brought them out of Ur of the Chaldeans, to go to the land of Canaan. But when they reached Haran, they settled there. 32 The lifetime of Terah was two hundred and five years; then Terah died in Haran.[d]
Abram’s Call and Migration. 1 The Lord said to Abram: Go forth[e] from your land, your relatives, and from your father’s house to a land that I will show you. 2 [f]I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you. All the families of the earth will find blessing in you.[g]
4 Abram went as the Lord directed him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he left Haran. 5 [h]Abram took his wife Sarai, his brother’s son Lot, all the possessions that they had accumulated, and the persons they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan. When they came to the land of Canaan, 6 [i]Abram passed through the land as far as the sacred place at Shechem, by the oak of Moreh. The Canaanites were then in the land.
7 The Lord appeared to Abram and said: To your descendants I will give this land. So Abram built an altar there to the Lord who had appeared to him. 8 From there he moved on to the hill country east of Bethel, pitching his tent with Bethel to the west and Ai to the east. He built an altar there to the Lord and invoked the Lord by name. 9 Then Abram journeyed on by stages to the Negeb.[j]
Abram and Sarai in Egypt.[k] 10 There was famine in the land; so Abram went down to Egypt to sojourn there, since the famine in the land was severe. 11 When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai: “I know that you are a beautiful woman. 12 When the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘She is his wife’; then they will kill me, but let you live. 13 Please say, therefore, that you are my sister,[l] so that I may fare well on your account and my life may be spared for your sake.” 14 When Abram arrived in Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. 15 When Pharaoh’s officials saw her they praised her to Pharaoh, and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. 16 Abram fared well on her account, and he acquired sheep, oxen, male and female servants, male and female donkeys, and camels.[m]
17 But the Lord struck Pharaoh and his household with severe plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. 18 Then Pharaoh summoned Abram and said to him: “How could you do this to me! Why did you not tell me she was your wife? 19 Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her for my wife? Now, here is your wife. Take her and leave!”
20 Then Pharaoh gave his men orders concerning Abram, and they sent him away, with his wife and all that belonged to him.
Abram and Lot Part. 1 From Egypt Abram went up to the Negeb with his wife and all that belonged to him, and Lot went with him. 2 [n]Now Abram was very rich in livestock, silver, and gold. 3 From the Negeb he traveled by stages toward Bethel, to the place between Bethel and Ai where his tent had formerly stood, 4 the site where he had first built the altar; and there Abram invoked the Lord by name.
5 Lot, who went with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents, 6 so that the land could not support them if they stayed together; their possessions were so great that they could not live together. 7 There were quarrels between the herders of Abram’s livestock and the herders of Lot’s livestock. At this time the Canaanites and the Perizzites were living in the land.
8 So Abram said to Lot: “Let there be no strife between you and me, or between your herders and my herders, for we are kindred. 9 Is not the whole land available? Please separate from me. If you prefer the left, I will go to the right; if you prefer the right, I will go to the left.” 10 Lot looked about and saw how abundantly watered the whole Jordan Plain was as far as Zoar, like the Lord’s own garden, or like Egypt. This was before the Lord had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. 11 Lot, therefore, chose for himself the whole Jordan Plain and set out eastward. Thus they separated from each other. 12 Abram settled in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled among the cities of the Plain, pitching his tents near Sodom. 13 Now the inhabitants of Sodom were wicked, great sinners against the Lord.
14 After Lot had parted from him, the Lord said to Abram: Look about you, and from where you are, gaze to the north and south, east and west; 15 all the land that you see I will give to you and your descendants forever. 16 I will make your descendants like the dust of the earth; if anyone could count the dust of the earth, your descendants too might be counted. 17 Get up and walk through the land, across its length and breadth, for I give it to you. 18 Abram moved his tents and went on to settle near the oak of Mamre, which is at Hebron. There he built an altar to the Lord.
The Four Kings. 1 [o]When Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of Goiim 2 made war on Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar), 3 all the latter kings joined forces in the Valley of Siddim (that is, the Salt Sea[p]). 4 For twelve years they had served Chedorlaomer, but in the thirteenth year they rebelled. 5 In the fourteenth year Chedorlaomer and the kings allied with him came and defeated the Rephaim in Ashteroth-karnaim, the Zuzim in Ham, the Emim in Shaveh-kiriathaim, 6 and the Horites in the hill country of Seir, as far as El-paran, close by the wilderness. 7 They then turned back and came to En-mishpat (that is, Kadesh), and they subdued the whole country of both the Amalekites and the Amorites who lived in Hazazon-tamar. 8 Thereupon the king of Sodom, the king of Gomorrah, the king of Admah, the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar) marched out, and in the Valley of Siddim they went into battle against them: 9 against Chedorlaomer king of Elam, Tidal king of Goiim, Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar—four kings against five. 10 Now the Valley of Siddim was full of bitumen pits; and as the king of Sodom and the king of Gomorrah fled, they fell into these, while the rest fled to the mountains. 11 The victors seized all the possessions and food supplies of Sodom and Gomorrah and then went their way. 12 They took with them Abram’s nephew Lot, who had been living in Sodom, as well as his possessions, and departed.
13 A survivor came and brought the news to Abram the Hebrew,[q] who was camping at the oak of Mamre the Amorite, a kinsman of Eshcol and Aner; these were allies of Abram. 14 When Abram heard that his kinsman had been captured, he mustered three hundred and eighteen of his retainers,[r] born in his house, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. 15 He and his servants deployed against them at night, defeated them, and pursued them as far as Hobah, which is north of Damascus. 16 He recovered all the possessions. He also recovered his kinsman Lot and his possessions, along with the women and the other people.
17 When Abram returned from his defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were allied with him, the king of Sodom went out to greet him in the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley).
18 Melchizedek, king of Salem,[s] brought out bread and wine. He was a priest of God Most High. 19 He blessed Abram with these words:
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.
21 The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the captives; the goods you may keep.” 22 But Abram replied to the king of Sodom: “I have sworn to the Lord, God Most High,[t] the creator of heaven and earth, 23 that I would not take so much as a thread or a sandal strap from anything that is yours, so that you cannot say, ‘I made Abram rich.’ 24 Nothing for me except what my servants have consumed and the share that is due to the men who went with me—Aner, Eshcol and Mamre; let them take their share.”
The Covenant with Abram.[u] 1 Some time afterward, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: Do not fear, Abram! I am your shield; I will make your reward very great.
2 But Abram said, “Lord God, what can you give me, if I die childless and have only a servant of my household, Eliezer of Damascus?” 3 Abram continued, “Look, you have given me no offspring, so a servant of my household will be my heir.” 4 Then the word of the Lord came to him: No, that one will not be your heir; your own offspring will be your heir. 5 He took him outside and said: Look up at the sky and count the stars, if you can. Just so, he added, will your descendants be. 6 Abram put his faith in the Lord, who attributed it to him as an act of righteousness.[v]
7 He then said to him: I am the Lord who brought you from Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land as a possession. 8 “Lord God,” he asked, “how will I know that I will possess it?” 9 [w]He answered him: Bring me a three-year-old heifer, a three-year-old female goat, a three-year-old ram, a turtledove, and a young pigeon. 10 He brought him all these, split them in two, and placed each half opposite the other; but the birds he did not cut up. 11 Birds of prey swooped down on the carcasses, but Abram scared them away. 12 As the sun was about to set, a deep sleep fell upon Abram, and a great, dark dread descended upon him.
13 [x]Then the Lord said to Abram: Know for certain that your descendants will reside as aliens in a land not their own, where they shall be enslaved and oppressed for four hundred years. 14 But I will bring judgment on the nation they must serve, and after this they will go out with great wealth. 15 You, however, will go to your ancestors in peace; you will be buried at a ripe old age. 16 In the fourth generation[y] your descendants will return here, for the wickedness of the Amorites is not yet complete.
17 When the sun had set and it was dark, there appeared a smoking fire pot and a flaming torch, which passed between those pieces. 18 [z]On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying: To your descendants I give this land, from the Wadi of Egypt to the Great River, the Euphrates, 19 the land of the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, 20 the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, 21 the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.
Birth of Ishmael.[aa] 1 Abram’s wife Sarai had borne him no children. Now she had an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar. 2 Sarai said to Abram: “The Lord has kept me from bearing children. Have intercourse with my maid; perhaps I will have sons through her.” Abram obeyed Sarai.[ab] 3 Thus, after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, his wife Sarai took her maid, Hagar the Egyptian, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife. 4 He had intercourse with her, and she became pregnant. As soon as Hagar knew she was pregnant, her mistress lost stature in her eyes.[ac] 5 So Sarai said to Abram: “This outrage against me is your fault. I myself gave my maid to your embrace; but ever since she knew she was pregnant, I have lost stature in her eyes. May the Lord decide between you and me!” 6 Abram told Sarai: “Your maid is in your power. Do to her what you regard as right.” Sarai then mistreated her so much that Hagar ran away from her.
7 The Lord’s angel[ad] found her by a spring in the wilderness, the spring on the road to Shur, 8 and he asked, “Hagar, maid of Sarai, where have you come from and where are you going?” She answered, “I am running away from my mistress, Sarai.” 9 But the Lord’s angel told her: “Go back to your mistress and submit to her authority. 10 I will make your descendants so numerous,” added the Lord’s angel, “that they will be too many to count.” 11 Then the Lord’s angel said to her:
“You are now pregnant and shall bear a son;
13 To the Lord who spoke to her she gave a name, saying, “You are God who sees me”;[ag] she meant, “Have I really seen God and remained alive after he saw me?” 14 That is why the well is called Beer-lahai-roi.[ah] It is between Kadesh and Bered.
15 Hagar bore Abram a son, and Abram named the son whom Hagar bore him Ishmael. 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore him Ishmael.
Covenant of Circumcision.[ai] 1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said: I am God the Almighty. Walk in my presence and be blameless. 2 Between you and me I will establish my covenant, and I will multiply you exceedingly.
3 Abram fell face down and God said to him: 4 For my part, here is my covenant with you: you are to become the father of a multitude of nations. 5 No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham,[aj] for I am making you the father of a multitude of nations. 6 I will make you exceedingly fertile; I will make nations of you; kings will stem from you. 7 I will maintain my covenant between me and you and your descendants after you throughout the ages as an everlasting covenant, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. 8 I will give to you and to your descendants after you the land in which you are now residing as aliens, the whole land of Canaan, as a permanent possession; and I will be their God. 9 God said to Abraham: For your part, you and your descendants after you must keep my covenant throughout the ages. 10 This is the covenant between me and you and your descendants after you that you must keep: every male among you shall be circumcised.[ak] 11 Circumcise the flesh of your foreskin. That will be the sign of the covenant between me and you. 12 Throughout the ages, every male among you, when he is eight days old, shall be circumcised, including houseborn slaves and those acquired with money from any foreigner who is not of your descendants. 13 Yes, both the houseborn slaves and those acquired with money must be circumcised. Thus my covenant will be in your flesh as an everlasting covenant. 14 If a male is uncircumcised, that is, if the flesh of his foreskin has not been cut away, such a one will be cut off from his people; he has broken my covenant.
15 God further said to Abraham: As for Sarai your wife, do not call her Sarai; her name will be Sarah.[al] 16 I will bless her, and I will give you a son by her. Her also will I bless; she will give rise to nations, and rulers of peoples will issue from her. 17 Abraham fell face down and laughed[am] as he said to himself, “Can a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Can Sarah give birth at ninety?” 18 So Abraham said to God, “If only Ishmael could live in your favor!” 19 God replied: Even so, your wife Sarah is to bear you a son, and you shall call him Isaac. It is with him that I will maintain my covenant as an everlasting covenant and with his descendants after him. 20 Now as for Ishmael, I will heed you: I hereby bless him. I will make him fertile and will multiply him exceedingly. He will become the father of twelve chieftains, and I will make of him a great nation. 21 But my covenant I will maintain with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you by this time next year. 22 When he had finished speaking with Abraham, God departed from him.
23 Then Abraham took his son Ishmael and all his slaves, whether born in his house or acquired with his money—every male among the members of Abraham’s household—and he circumcised the flesh of their foreskins on that same day, as God had told him to do. 24 Abraham was ninety-nine years old when the flesh of his foreskin was circumcised, 25 and his son Ishmael was thirteen years old when the flesh of his foreskin was circumcised. 26 Thus, on that same day Abraham and his son Ishmael were circumcised; 27 and all the males of his household, including the slaves born in his house or acquired with his money from foreigners, were circumcised with him.
Abraham’s Visitors. 1 [an]The Lord appeared to Abraham by the oak of Mamre, as he sat in the entrance of his tent, while the day was growing hot. 2 Looking up, he saw three men standing near him. When he saw them, he ran from the entrance of the tent to greet them; and bowing to the ground, 3 he said: “Sir,[ao] if it please you, do not go on past your servant. 4 Let some water be brought, that you may bathe your feet, and then rest under the tree. 5 Now that you have come to your servant, let me bring you a little food, that you may refresh yourselves; and afterward you may go on your way.” “Very well,” they replied, “do as you have said.”
6 Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah and said, “Quick, three measures[ap] of bran flour! Knead it and make bread.” 7 He ran to the herd, picked out a tender, choice calf, and gave it to a servant, who quickly prepared it. 8 Then he got some curds[aq] and milk, as well as the calf that had been prepared, and set these before them, waiting on them under the tree while they ate.
9 “Where is your wife Sarah?” they asked him. “There in the tent,” he replied. 10 One of them[ar] said, “I will return to you about this time next year, and Sarah will then have a son.” Sarah was listening at the entrance of the tent, just behind him. 11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in years, and Sarah had stopped having her menstrual periods. 12 So Sarah laughed[as] to herself and said, “Now that I am worn out and my husband is old, am I still to have sexual pleasure?” 13 But the Lord said to Abraham: “Why did Sarah laugh and say, ‘Will I really bear a child, old as I am?’ 14 Is anything too marvelous for the Lord to do? At the appointed time, about this time next year, I will return to you, and Sarah will have a son.” 15 Sarah lied, saying, “I did not laugh,” because she was afraid. But he said, “Yes, you did.”
Abraham Intercedes for Sodom. 16 With Abraham walking with them to see them on their way, the men set out from there and looked down toward Sodom. 17 The Lord considered: Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do, 18 now that he is to become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth are to find blessing in him? 19 Indeed, I have singled him out that he may direct his children and his household in the future to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord may put into effect for Abraham the promises he made about him. 20 So the Lord said: The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great, and their sin so grave,[at] 21 that I must go down to see whether or not their actions are as bad as the cry against them that comes to me. I mean to find out.
22 As the men turned and walked on toward Sodom, Abraham remained standing before the Lord. 23 Then Abraham drew near and said: “Will you really sweep away the righteous with the wicked? 24 Suppose there were fifty righteous people in the city; would you really sweep away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people within it? 25 Far be it from you to do such a thing, to kill the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike! Far be it from you! Should not the judge of all the world do what is just?” 26 The Lord replied: If I find fifty righteous people in the city of Sodom, I will spare the whole place for their sake. 27 Abraham spoke up again: “See how I am presuming to speak to my Lord, though I am only dust and ashes! 28 What if there are five less than fifty righteous people? Will you destroy the whole city because of those five?” I will not destroy it, he answered, if I find forty-five there. 29 But Abraham persisted, saying, “What if only forty are found there?” He replied: I will refrain from doing it for the sake of the forty. 30 Then he said, “Do not let my Lord be angry if I go on. What if only thirty are found there?” He replied: I will refrain from doing it if I can find thirty there. 31 Abraham went on, “Since I have thus presumed to speak to my Lord, what if there are no more than twenty?” I will not destroy it, he answered, for the sake of the twenty. 32 But he persisted: “Please, do not let my Lord be angry if I speak up this last time. What if ten are found there?” For the sake of the ten, he replied, I will not destroy it.
33 The Lord departed as soon as he had finished speaking with Abraham, and Abraham returned home.
Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.[au] 1 The two angels reached Sodom in the evening, as Lot was sitting at the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he got up to greet them; and bowing down with his face to the ground, 2 he said, “Please, my lords,[av] come aside into your servant’s house for the night, and bathe your feet; you can get up early to continue your journey.” But they replied, “No, we will pass the night in the town square.” 3 He urged them so strongly, however, that they turned aside to his place and entered his house. He prepared a banquet for them, baking unleavened bread, and they dined.
4 Before they went to bed, the townsmen of Sodom, both young and old—all the people to the last man—surrounded the house. 5 They called to Lot and said to him, “Where are the men who came to your house tonight? Bring them out to us that we may have sexual relations with them.” 6 Lot went out to meet them at the entrance. When he had shut the door behind him, 7 he said, “I beg you, my brothers, do not do this wicked thing! 8 I have two daughters who have never had sexual relations with men. Let me bring them out to you,[aw] and you may do to them as you please. But do not do anything to these men, for they have come under the shelter of my roof.” 9 They replied, “Stand back! This man,” they said, “came here as a resident alien, and now he dares to give orders! We will treat you worse than them!” With that, they pressed hard against Lot, moving in closer to break down the door. 10 But his guests put out their hands, pulled Lot inside with them, and closed the door; 11 they struck the men at the entrance of the house, small and great, with such a blinding light[ax] that they were utterly unable to find the doorway.
12 Then the guests said to Lot: “Who else belongs to you here? Sons-in-law, your sons, your daughters, all who belong to you in the city—take them away from this place! 13 We are about to destroy this place, for the outcry reaching the Lord against those here is so great that the Lord has sent us to destroy it.” 14 So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who had contracted marriage with his daughters.[ay] “Come on, leave this place,” he told them; “the Lord is about to destroy the city.” But his sons-in-law thought he was joking.
15 As dawn was breaking, the angels urged Lot on, saying, “Come on! Take your wife with you and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away in the punishment of the city.” 16 When he hesitated, the men, because of the Lord’s compassion for him, seized his hand and the hands of his wife and his two daughters and led them to safety outside the city. 17 As soon as they had brought them outside, they said: “Flee for your life! Do not look back or stop anywhere on the Plain. Flee to the hills at once, or you will be swept away.” 18 “Oh, no, my lords!” Lot replied to them. 19 “You have already shown favor to your servant, doing me the great kindness of saving my life. But I cannot flee to the hills, or the disaster will overtake and kill me. 20 Look, this town ahead is near enough to escape to. It is only a small place.[az] Let me flee there—is it not a small place?—to save my life.” 21 “Well, then,” he replied, “I grant you this favor too. I will not overthrow the town you have mentioned. 22 Hurry, escape there! I cannot do anything until you arrive there.” That is why the town is called Zoar.
23 The sun had risen over the earth when Lot arrived in Zoar, 24 and the Lord rained down sulfur upon Sodom and Gomorrah, fire from the Lord out of heaven. 25 He overthrew[ba] those cities and the whole Plain, together with the inhabitants of the cities and the produce of the soil. 26 But Lot’s wife looked back, and she was turned into a pillar of salt.
27 The next morning Abraham hurried to the place where he had stood before the Lord. 28 As he looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah and the whole region of the Plain,[bb] he saw smoke over the land rising like the smoke from a kiln.
29 When God destroyed the cities of the Plain, he remembered Abraham and sent Lot away from the upheaval that occurred when God overthrew the cities where Lot had been living.
Moabites and Ammonites.[bc] 30 Since Lot was afraid to stay in Zoar, he and his two daughters went up from Zoar and settled in the hill country, where he lived with his two daughters in a cave. 31 The firstborn said to the younger: “Our father is getting old, and there is not a man in the land to have intercourse with us as is the custom everywhere. 32 Come, let us ply our father with wine and then lie with him, that we may ensure posterity by our father.” 33 So that night they plied their father with wine, and the firstborn went in and lay with her father; but he was not aware of her lying down or getting up. 34 The next day the firstborn said to the younger: “Last night I lay with my father. Let us ply him with wine again tonight, and then you go in and lie with him, that we may ensure posterity by our father.” 35 So that night, too, they plied their father with wine, and then the younger one went in and lay with him; but he was not aware of her lying down or getting up.
36 Thus the two daughters of Lot became pregnant by their father. 37 The firstborn gave birth to a son whom she named Moab, saying, “From my father.”[bd] He is the ancestor of the Moabites of today. 38 The younger one, too, gave birth to a son, and she named him Ammon, saying, “The son of my kin.”[be] He is the ancestor of the Ammonites of today.
Abraham at Gerar.[bf] 1 From there Abraham journeyed on to the region of the Negeb, where he settled between Kadesh and Shur.[bg] While he resided in Gerar as an alien, 2 Abraham said of his wife Sarah, “She is my sister.” So Abimelech, king of Gerar, sent and took Sarah. 3 But God came to Abimelech in a dream one night and said to him: You are about to die because of the woman you have taken, for she has a husband. 4 Abimelech, who had not approached her, said: “O Lord, would you kill an innocent man? 5 Was he not the one who told me, ‘She is my sister’? She herself also stated, ‘He is my brother.’ I acted with pure heart and with clean hands.” 6 [bh]God answered him in the dream: Yes, I know you did it with a pure heart. In fact, it was I who kept you from sinning against me; that is why I did not let you touch her. 7 So now, return the man’s wife so that he may intercede for you, since he is a prophet,[bi] that you may live. If you do not return her, you can be sure that you and all who are yours will die.
8 Early the next morning Abimelech called all his servants and informed them of everything that had happened, and the men were filled with fear. 9 Then Abimelech summoned Abraham and said to him: “What have you done to us! What wrong did I do to you that you would have brought such great guilt on me and my kingdom? You have treated me in an intolerable way. 10 What did you have in mind,” Abimelech asked him, “that you would do such a thing?” 11 Abraham answered, “I thought there would be no fear of God[bj] in this place, and so they would kill me on account of my wife. 12 Besides, she really is my sister,[bk] but only my father’s daughter, not my mother’s; and so she became my wife. 13 When God sent me wandering from my father’s house, I asked her: ‘Would you do me this favor? In whatever place we come to, say: He is my brother.’”
14 Then Abimelech took flocks and herds and male and female slaves and gave them to Abraham; and he restored his wife Sarah to him. 15 Then Abimelech said, “Here, my land is at your disposal; settle wherever you please.” 16 To Sarah he said: “I hereby give your brother a thousand shekels of silver. This will preserve your honor before all who are with you and will exonerate you before everyone.” 17 Abraham then interceded with God, and God restored health to Abimelech, to his wife, and his maidservants, so that they bore children; 18 for the Lord had closed every womb in Abimelech’s household on account of Abraham’s wife Sarah.
Birth of Isaac.[bl] 1 The Lord took note of Sarah as he had said he would; the Lord did for her as he had promised. 2 Sarah became pregnant and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time that God had stated. 3 Abraham gave the name Isaac to this son of his whom Sarah bore him. 4 When his son Isaac was eight days old, Abraham circumcised him, as God had commanded. 5 Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him. 6 Sarah then said, “God has given me cause to laugh,[bm] and all who hear of it will laugh with me. 7 Who would ever have told Abraham,” she added, “that Sarah would nurse children! Yet I have borne him a son in his old age.” 8 The child grew and was weaned, and Abraham held a great banquet on the day of the child’s weaning.
9 Sarah noticed the son whom Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham playing with her son Isaac; 10 so she demanded of Abraham: “Drive out that slave and her son! No son of that slave is going to share the inheritance with my son Isaac!” 11 Abraham was greatly distressed because it concerned a son of his.[bn] 12 But God said to Abraham: Do not be distressed about the boy or about your slave woman. Obey Sarah, no matter what she asks of you; for it is through Isaac that descendants will bear your name. 13 As for the son of the slave woman, I will make a nation of him also,[bo] since he too is your offspring.
14 Early the next morning Abraham got some bread and a skin of water and gave them to Hagar. Then, placing the child on her back,[bp] he sent her away. As she roamed aimlessly in the wilderness of Beer-sheba, 15 the water in the skin was used up. So she put the child down under one of the bushes, 16 and then went and sat down opposite him, about a bowshot away; for she said to herself, “I cannot watch the child die.” As she sat opposite him, she wept aloud. 17 God heard the boy’s voice, and God’s angel called to Hagar from heaven: “What is the matter, Hagar? Do not fear; God has heard the boy’s voice in this plight of his. 18 Get up, lift up the boy and hold him by the hand; for I will make of him a great nation.” 19 Then God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water. She went and filled the skin with water, and then let the boy drink.
20 God was with the boy as he grew up. He lived in the wilderness and became an expert bowman. 21 He lived in the wilderness of Paran. His mother got a wife for him from the land of Egypt.
The Covenant at Beer-sheba. 22 [bq]At that time Abimelech, accompanied by Phicol, the commander of his army, said to Abraham: “God is with you in everything you do. 23 So now, swear to me by God at this place[br] that you will not deal falsely with me or with my progeny and posterity, but will act as loyally toward me and the land in which you reside as I have acted toward you.” 24 Abraham replied, “I so swear.”
25 Abraham, however, reproached Abimelech about a well that Abimelech’s servants had seized by force. 26 “I have no idea who did that,” Abimelech replied. “In fact, you never told me about it, nor did I ever hear of it until now.”
27 Then Abraham took sheep and cattle and gave them to Abimelech and the two made a covenant. 28 Abraham also set apart seven ewe lambs of the flock, 29 and Abimelech asked him, “What is the purpose of these seven ewe lambs that you have set apart?” 30 Abraham answered, “The seven ewe lambs you shall accept from me that you may be my witness that I dug this well.” 31 This is why the place is called Beer-sheba; the two of them took an oath there. 32 When they had thus made the covenant in Beer-sheba, Abimelech, along with Phicol, the commander of his army, left to return to the land of the Philistines.[bs]
33 Abraham planted a tamarisk at Beer-sheba, and there he invoked by name the Lord, God the Eternal.[bt] 34 Abraham resided in the land of the Philistines for a long time.
The Testing of Abraham.[bu] 1 Some time afterward, God put Abraham to the test and said to him: Abraham! “Here I am!” he replied. 2 Then God said: Take your son Isaac, your only one, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah. There offer him up as a burnt offering on one of the heights that I will point out to you. 3 Early the next morning Abraham saddled his donkey, took with him two of his servants and his son Isaac, and after cutting the wood for the burnt offering, set out for the place of which God had told him.
4 On the third day Abraham caught sight of the place from a distance. 5 Abraham said to his servants: “Stay here with the donkey, while the boy and I go on over there. We will worship and then come back to you.” 6 So Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and laid it on his son Isaac, while he himself carried the fire and the knife. As the two walked on together, 7 Isaac spoke to his father Abraham. “Father!” he said. “Here I am,” he replied. Isaac continued, “Here are the fire and the wood, but where is the sheep for the burnt offering?” 8 “My son,” Abraham answered, “God will provide the sheep for the burnt offering.” Then the two walked on together.
9 When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. Next he bound[bv] his son Isaac, and put him on top of the wood on the altar. 10 Then Abraham reached out and took the knife to slaughter his son. 11 But the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven, “Abraham, Abraham!” “Here I am,” he answered. 12 “Do not lay your hand on the boy,” said the angel. “Do not do the least thing to him. For now I know that you fear God, since you did not withhold from me your son, your only one.” 13 Abraham looked up and saw a single ram caught by its horns in the thicket. So Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering in place of his son.[bw] 14 Abraham named that place Yahweh-yireh;[bx] hence people today say, “On the mountain the Lord will provide.”
15 [by]A second time the angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven 16 and said: “I swear by my very self—oracle of the Lord—that because you acted as you did in not withholding from me your son, your only one, 17 I will bless you and make your descendants as countless as the stars of the sky and the sands of the seashore; your descendants will take possession of the gates of their enemies, 18 and in your descendants all the nations of the earth will find blessing, because you obeyed my command.”
19 Abraham then returned to his servants, and they set out together for Beer-sheba, where Abraham lived.
Nahor’s Descendants.[bz] 20 Some time afterward, the news came to Abraham: “Milcah too has borne sons to your brother Nahor: 21 Uz, his firstborn, his brother Buz, Kemuel the father of Aram, 22 Chesed, Hazo, Pildash, Jidlaph, and Bethuel.” 23 Bethuel became the father of Rebekah. These eight Milcah bore to Nahor, Abraham’s brother. 24 His concubine, whose name was Reumah, also bore children: Tebah, Gaham, Tahash, and Maacah.
Purchase of a Burial Plot.[ca] 1 The span of Sarah’s life was one hundred and twenty-seven years. 2 She died in Kiriath-arba—now Hebron—in the land of Canaan, and Abraham proceeded to mourn and weep for her. 3 Then he left the side of his deceased wife and addressed the Hittites:[cb] 4 “Although I am a resident alien[cc] among you, sell me from your holdings a burial place, that I may bury my deceased wife.” 5 The Hittites answered Abraham: “Please, 6 sir, listen to us! You are a mighty leader among us. Bury your dead in the choicest of our burial sites. None of us would deny you his burial ground for the burial of your dead.” 7 Abraham, however, proceeded to bow low before the people of the land, the Hittites, 8 and said to them: “If you will allow me room for burial of my dead, listen to me! Intercede for me with Ephron, son of Zohar, 9 so that he will sell me the cave of Machpelah that he owns; it is at the edge of his field. Let him sell it to me in your presence at its full price for a burial place.”
10 Now Ephron was sitting with the Hittites. So Ephron the Hittite replied to Abraham in the hearing of the Hittites, all who entered the gate of his city: 11 “Please, sir, listen to me! I give you both the field and the cave in it; in the presence of my people I give it to you. Bury your dead!” 12 But Abraham, after bowing low before the people of the land, 13 addressed Ephron in the hearing of these men: “If only you would please listen to me! I will pay you the price of the field. Accept it from me, that I may bury my dead there.” 14 Ephron replied to Abraham, “Please, 15 sir, listen to me! A piece of land worth four hundred shekels[cd] of silver—what is that between you and me? Bury your dead!” 16 Abraham accepted Ephron’s terms; he weighed out to him the silver that Ephron had stipulated in the hearing of the Hittites, four hundred shekels of silver at the current market value.[ce]
17 Thus Ephron’s field in Machpelah, facing Mamre, together with its cave and all the trees anywhere within its limits, was conveyed 18 to Abraham by purchase in the presence of the Hittites, all who entered the gate of Ephron’s city. 19 After this, Abraham buried his wife Sarah in the cave of the field of Machpelah, facing Mamre—now Hebron—in the land of Canaan. 20 Thus the field with its cave was transferred from the Hittites to Abraham as a burial place.
Isaac and Rebekah.[cf] 1 Abraham was old, having seen many days, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. 2 Abraham said to the senior servant of his household, who had charge of all his possessions: “Put your hand under my thigh,[cg] 3 and I will make you swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and the God of earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites among whom I live, 4 but that you will go to my own land and to my relatives to get a wife for my son Isaac.” 5 The servant asked him: “What if the woman is unwilling to follow me to this land? Should I then take your son back to the land from which you came?” 6 Abraham told him, “Never take my son back there for any reason! 7 The Lord, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and the land of my relatives, and who confirmed by oath the promise he made to me, ‘I will give this land to your descendants’—he will send his angel before you, and you will get a wife for my son there. 8 If the woman is unwilling to follow you, you will be released from this oath to me. But never take my son back there!” 9 So the servant put his hand under the thigh of his master Abraham and swore to him concerning this matter.
10 The servant then took ten of his master’s camels, and bearing all kinds of gifts from his master, he made his way to the city of Nahor[ch] in Aram Naharaim. 11 Near evening, at the time when women go out to draw water, he made the camels kneel by the well outside the city. 12 Then he said: “Lord, God of my master Abraham, let it turn out favorably for me[ci] today and thus deal graciously with my master Abraham. 13 While I stand here at the spring and the daughters of the townspeople are coming out to draw water, 14 if I say to a young woman, ‘Please lower your jug, that I may drink,’ and she answers, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels, too,’ then she is the one whom you have decided upon for your servant Isaac. In this way I will know that you have dealt graciously with my master.”
15 He had scarcely finished speaking when Rebekah—who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Abraham’s brother Nahor—came out with a jug on her shoulder. 16 The young woman was very beautiful, a virgin, untouched by man. She went down to the spring and filled her jug. As she came up, 17 the servant ran toward her and said, “Please give me a sip of water from your jug.” 18 “Drink, sir,” she replied, and quickly lowering the jug into her hand, she gave him a drink. 19 When she had finished giving him a drink, she said, “I will draw water for your camels, too, until they have finished drinking.” 20 With that, she quickly emptied her jug into the drinking trough and ran back to the well to draw more water, until she had drawn enough for all the camels. 21 The man watched her the whole time, silently waiting to learn whether or not the Lord had made his journey successful. 22 When the camels had finished drinking, the man took out a gold nose-ring weighing half a shekel, and two gold bracelets weighing ten shekels for her wrists. 23 Then he asked her: “Whose daughter are you? Tell me, please. And is there a place in your father’s house for us to spend the night?” 24 She answered: “I am the daughter of Bethuel the son of Milcah, whom she bore to Nahor. 25 We have plenty of straw and fodder,” she added, “and also a place to spend the night.” 26 The man then knelt and bowed down to the Lord, 27 saying: “Blessed be the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who has not let his kindness and fidelity toward my master fail. As for me, the Lord has led me straight to the house of my master’s brother.”
28 Then the young woman ran off and told her mother’s household what had happened. 29 Now Rebekah had a brother named Laban. Laban rushed outside to the man at the spring. 30 [cj]When he saw the nose-ring and the bracelets on his sister’s arms and when he heard Rebekah repeating what the man had said to her, he went to him while he was standing by the camels at the spring. 31 He said: “Come, blessed of the Lord! Why are you standing outside when I have made the house ready, as well as a place for the camels?” 32 The man then went inside; and while the camels were being unloaded and provided with straw and fodder, water was brought to bathe his feet and the feet of the men who were with him. 33 But when food was set before him, he said, “I will not eat until I have told my story.” “Go ahead,” they replied.
34 “I am Abraham’s servant,” he began. 35 “The Lord has blessed my master so abundantly that he has become wealthy; he has given him flocks and herds, silver and gold, male and female slaves, and camels and donkeys. 36 My master’s wife Sarah bore a son to my master in her old age, and he has given him everything he owns. 37 My master put me under oath, saying: ‘You shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites in whose land I live; 38 instead, you must go to my father’s house, to my own family, to get a wife for my son.’ 39 When I asked my master, ‘What if the woman will not follow me?’ 40 he replied: ‘The Lord, in whose presence I have always walked, will send his angel with you and make your journey successful, and so you will get a wife for my son from my own family and my father’s house. 41 Then you will be freed from my curse. If you go to my family and they refuse you, then, too, you will be free from my curse.’[ck]
42 “When I came to the spring today, I said: ‘Lord, God of my master Abraham, please make successful the journey I am on. 43 While I stand here at the spring, if I say to a young woman who comes out to draw water, ‘Please give me a little water from your jug,’ 44 and she answers, ‘Drink, and I will draw water for your camels, too—then she is the woman whom the Lord has decided upon for my master’s son.’
45 “I had scarcely finished saying this to myself when Rebekah came out with a jug on her shoulder. After she went down to the spring and drew water, I said to her, ‘Please let me have a drink.’ 46 She quickly lowered the jug she was carrying and said, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels, too.’ So I drank, and she watered the camels also. 47 When I asked her, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ she answered, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, son of Nahor, borne to Nahor by Milcah.’ So I put the ring on her nose and the bracelets on her wrists. 48 Then I knelt and bowed down to the Lord, blessing the Lord, the God of my master Abraham, who had led me on the right road to obtain the daughter of my master’s kinsman for his son. 49 Now, if you will act with kindness and fidelity toward my master, let me know; but if not, let me know that too. I can then proceed accordingly.”
50 Laban and Bethuel said in reply: “This thing comes from the Lord; we can say nothing to you either for or against it. 51 Here is Rebekah, right in front of you; take her and go, that she may become the wife of your master’s son, as the Lord has said.” 52 When Abraham’s servant heard their answer, he bowed to the ground before the Lord. 53 Then he brought out objects of silver and gold and clothing and presented them to Rebekah; he also gave costly presents to her brother and mother. 54 After he and the men with him had eaten and drunk, they spent the night there.
When they got up the next morning, he said, “Allow me to return to my master.” 55 Her brother and mother replied, “Let the young woman stay with us a short while, say ten days; after that she may go.” 56 But he said to them, “Do not detain me, now that the Lord has made my journey successful; let me go back to my master.” 57 They answered, “Let us call the young woman and see what she herself has to say about it.” 58 So they called Rebekah and asked her, “Will you go with this man?” She answered, “I will.”[cl] 59 At this they sent off their sister Rebekah and her nurse with Abraham’s servant and his men. 60 They blessed Rebekah and said:
“Sister, may you grow
61 Then Rebekah and her attendants started out; they mounted the camels and followed the man. So the servant took Rebekah and went on his way.
62 Meanwhile Isaac had gone from Beer-lahai-roi and was living in the region of the Negeb. 63 One day toward evening he went out to walk in the field, and caught sight of camels approaching. 64 Rebekah, too, caught sight of Isaac, and got down from her camel. 65 She asked the servant, “Who is the man over there, walking through the fields toward us?” “That is my master,” replied the servant. Then she took her veil and covered herself.
66 The servant recounted to Isaac all the things he had done. 67 Then Isaac brought Rebekah into the tent of his mother Sarah. He took Rebekah as his wife. Isaac loved her and found solace after the death of his mother.
Abraham’s Sons by Keturah. 1 [cm]Abraham took another wife, whose name was Keturah. 2 She bore him Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak, and Shuah.[cn] 3 Jokshan became the father of Sheba and Dedan. The descendants of Dedan were the Asshurim, the Letushim, and the Leummim. 4 The descendants of Midian were Ephah, Epher, Hanoch, Abida, and Eldaah. All of these were descendants of Keturah.
5 Abraham gave everything that he owned to his son Isaac.[co] 6 To the sons of his concubines, however, he gave gifts while he was still living, as he sent them away eastward, to the land of Kedem,[cp] away from his son Isaac.
Death of Abraham. 7 The whole span of Abraham’s life was one hundred and seventy-five years. 8 Then he breathed his last, dying at a ripe old age, grown old after a full life; and he was gathered to his people. 9 His sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the cave of Machpelah, in the field of Ephron, son of Zohar the Hittite, which faces Mamre, 10 the field that Abraham had bought from the Hittites; there he was buried next to his wife Sarah. 11 After the death of Abraham, God blessed his son Isaac, who lived near Beer-lahai-roi.
Descendants of Ishmael. 12 [cq]These are the descendants of Abraham’s son Ishmael, whom Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah’s slave, bore to Abraham. 13 These are the names of Ishmael’s sons, listed in the order of their birth: Ishmael’s firstborn Nebaioth, Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, 14 Mishma, Dumah, Massa, 15 Hadad, Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. 16 These are the sons of Ishmael, their names by their villages and encampments; twelve chieftains of as many tribal groups.
17 The span of Ishmael’s life was one hundred and thirty-seven years. After he had breathed his last and died, he was gathered to his people. 18 The Ishmaelites ranged from Havilah, by Shur, which is on the border of Egypt, all the way to Asshur; and they pitched camp[cr] alongside their various kindred.
Birth of Esau and Jacob. 19 [cs]These are the descendants of Isaac, son of Abraham; Abraham begot Isaac. 20 Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel the Aramean of Paddan-aram[ct] and the sister of Laban the Aramean. 21 Isaac entreated the Lord on behalf of his wife, since she was sterile. The Lord heard his entreaty, and his wife Rebekah became pregnant. 22 But the children jostled each other in the womb so much that she exclaimed, “If it is like this,[cu] why go on living!” She went to consult the Lord, 23 and the Lord answered her:
Two nations are in your womb,
24 When the time of her delivery came, there were twins in her womb. 25 The first to emerge was reddish,[cw] and his whole body was like a hairy mantle; so they named him Esau. 26 Next his brother came out, gripping Esau’s heel;[cx] so he was named Jacob. Isaac was sixty years old when they were born.
27 When the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the open country; whereas Jacob was a simple[cy] man, who stayed among the tents. 28 Isaac preferred Esau, because he was fond of game; but Rebekah preferred Jacob. 29 Once, when Jacob was cooking a stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished. 30 He said to Jacob, “Let me gulp down some of that red stuff;[cz] I am famished.” That is why he was called Edom. 31 But Jacob replied, “First sell me your right as firstborn.”[da] 32 “Look,” said Esau, “I am on the point of dying. What good is the right as firstborn to me?” 33 But Jacob said, “Swear to me first!” So he sold Jacob his right as firstborn under oath. 34 Jacob then gave him some bread and the lentil stew; and Esau ate, drank, got up, and went his way. So Esau treated his right as firstborn with disdain.
Isaac and Abimelech. 1 [db]There was a famine in the land, distinct from the earlier one that had occurred in the days of Abraham, and Isaac went down to Abimelech, king of the Philistines in Gerar. 2 The Lord appeared to him and said: Do not go down to Egypt, but camp in this land wherever I tell you. 3 Sojourn in this land, and I will be with you and bless you; for to you and your descendants I will give all these lands, in fulfillment of the oath that I swore to your father Abraham. 4 I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky, and I will give them all these lands, and in your descendants all the nations of the earth will find blessing— 5 this because Abraham obeyed me, keeping my mandate, my commandments, my ordinances, and my instructions.
6 [dc]So Isaac settled in Gerar. 7 When the men of the place asked questions about his wife, he answered, “She is my sister.” He was afraid that, if he called her his wife, the men of the place would kill him on account of Rebekah, since she was beautiful. 8 But when they had been there for a long time, Abimelech, king of the Philistines, looked out of a window and saw Isaac fondling his wife Rebekah. 9 He called for Isaac and said: “She must certainly be your wife! How could you have said, ‘She is my sister’?” Isaac replied, “I thought I might lose my life on her account.” 10 “How could you have done this to us!” exclaimed Abimelech. “It would have taken very little for one of the people to lie with your wife, and so you would have brought guilt upon us!” 11 Abimelech then commanded all the people: “Anyone who maltreats this man or his wife shall be put to death.”
12 [dd]Isaac sowed a crop in that region and reaped a hundredfold the same year. Since the Lord blessed him, 13 he became richer and richer all the time, until he was very wealthy. 14 He acquired flocks and herds, and a great work force, and so the Philistines became envious of him. 15 The Philistines had stopped up and filled with dirt all the wells that his father’s servants had dug back in the days of his father Abraham. 16 So Abimelech said to Isaac, “Go away from us; you have become far too numerous for us.” 17 Isaac left there and camped in the Wadi Gerar where he stayed. 18 Isaac reopened the wells which his father’s servants had dug back in the days of his father Abraham and which the Philistines had stopped up after Abraham’s death; he gave them names like those that his father had given them. 19 But when Isaac’s servants dug in the wadi and reached spring water in their well, 20 the shepherds of Gerar argued with Isaac’s shepherds, saying, “The water belongs to us!” So he named the well Esek,[de] because they had quarreled there. 21 Then they dug another well, and they argued over that one too; so he named it Sitnah.[df] 22 So he moved on from there and dug still another well, but over this one they did not argue. He named it Rehoboth,[dg] and said, “Because the Lord has now given us ample room, we shall flourish in the land.”
23 From there Isaac went up to Beer-sheba. 24 The same night the Lord appeared to him and said: I am the God of Abraham, your father. Do not fear, for I am with you. I will bless you and multiply your descendants for the sake of Abraham, my servant. 25 So Isaac built an altar there and invoked the Lord by name. After he had pitched his tent there, Isaac’s servants began to dig a well nearby.
26 Then Abimelech came to him from Gerar, with Ahuzzath, his councilor, and Phicol, the general of his army. 27 Isaac asked them, “Why have you come to me, since you hate me and have driven me away from you?” 28 They answered: “We clearly see that the Lord has been with you, so we thought: let there be a sworn agreement between our two sides—between you and us. Let us make a covenant with you: 29 you shall do no harm to us, just as we have not maltreated you, but have always acted kindly toward you and have let you depart in peace. So now, may you be blessed by the Lord!” 30 Isaac then made a feast for them, and they ate and drank. 31 Early the next morning they exchanged oaths. Then Isaac sent them on their way, and they departed from him in peace.
32 That same day Isaac’s servants came and informed him about the well they had been digging; they told him, “We have reached water!” 33 He called it Shibah;[dh] hence the name of the city is Beer-sheba to this day. 34 [di]When Esau was forty years old, he married Judith, daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Basemath, daughter of Elon the Hivite. 35 But they became a source of bitterness to Isaac and Rebekah.
Jacob’s Deception.[dj] 1 When Isaac was so old that his eyesight had failed him, he called his older son Esau and said to him, “My son!” “Here I am!” he replied. 2 Isaac then said, “Now I have grown old. I do not know when I might die. 3 So now take your hunting gear—your quiver and bow—and go out into the open country to hunt some game for me. 4 Then prepare for me a dish in the way I like, and bring it to me to eat, so that I may bless you[dk] before I die.”
5 Rebekah had been listening while Isaac was speaking to his son Esau. So when Esau went out into the open country to hunt some game for his father, 6 Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “Listen! I heard your father tell your brother Esau, 7 ‘Bring me some game and prepare a dish for me to eat, that I may bless you with the Lord’s approval before I die.’ 8 Now, my son, obey me in what I am about to order you. 9 Go to the flock and get me two choice young goats so that with these I might prepare a dish for your father in the way he likes. 10 Then bring it to your father to eat, that he may bless you before he dies.” 11 But Jacob said to his mother Rebekah, “But my brother Esau is a hairy man and I am smooth-skinned! 12 Suppose my father feels me? He will think I am making fun of him, and I will bring on myself a curse instead of a blessing.” 13 His mother, however, replied: “Let any curse against you, my son, fall on me! Just obey me. Go and get me the young goats.”
14 So Jacob went and got them and brought them to his mother, and she prepared a dish in the way his father liked. 15 Rebekah then took the best clothes of her older son Esau that she had in the house, and gave them to her younger son Jacob to wear; 16 and with the goatskins she covered up his hands and the hairless part of his neck. 17 Then she gave her son Jacob the dish and the bread she had prepared.
18 Going to his father, Jacob said, “Father!” “Yes?” replied Isaac. “Which of my sons are you?” 19 Jacob answered his father: “I am Esau, your firstborn. I did as you told me. Please sit up and eat some of my game, so that you may bless me.” 20 But Isaac said to his son, “How did you get it so quickly, my son?” He answered, “The Lord, your God, directed me.” 21 Isaac then said to Jacob, “Come closer, my son, that I may feel you, to learn whether you really are my son Esau or not.” 22 So Jacob moved up closer to his father. When Isaac felt him, he said, “Although the voice is Jacob’s, the hands are Esau’s.” 23 (He failed to identify him because his hands were hairy, like those of his brother Esau; so he blessed him.) 24 Again Isaac said, “Are you really my son Esau?” And Jacob said, “I am.” 25 Then Isaac said, “Serve me, my son, and let me eat of the game so that I may bless you.” Jacob served it to him, and Isaac ate; he brought him wine, and he drank. 26 Finally his father Isaac said to him, “Come closer, my son, and kiss me.” 27 As Jacob went up to kiss him, Isaac smelled the fragrance of his clothes. With that, he blessed him, saying,
“Ah, the fragrance of my son
30 Jacob had scarcely left his father after Isaac had finished blessing him, when his brother Esau came back from his hunt. 31 Then he too prepared a dish, and bringing it to his father, he said, “Let my father sit up and eat some of his son’s game, that you may then give me your blessing.” 32 His father Isaac asked him, “Who are you?” He said, “I am your son, your firstborn son, Esau.” 33 Isaac trembled greatly. “Who was it, then,” he asked, “that hunted game and brought it to me? I ate it all just before you came, and I blessed him. Now he is blessed!” 34 As he heard his father’s words, Esau burst into loud, bitter sobbing and said, “Father, bless me too!” 35 When Isaac said, “Your brother came here by a ruse and carried off your blessing,” 36 Esau exclaimed, “He is well named Jacob, is he not! He has supplanted me[dl] twice! First he took away my right as firstborn, and now he has taken away my blessing.” Then he said, “Have you not saved a blessing for me?” 37 Isaac replied to Esau: “I have already appointed him your master, and I have assigned to him all his kindred as his servants; besides, I have sustained him with grain and wine. What then can I do for you, my son?” 38 But Esau said to his father, “Have you only one blessing, father? Bless me too, father!” and Esau wept aloud. 39 His father Isaac said in response:
“See, far from the fertile earth
41 Esau bore a grudge against Jacob because of the blessing his father had given him. Esau said to himself, “Let the time of mourning for my father come, so that I may kill my brother Jacob.” 42 When Rebekah got news of what her older son Esau had in mind, she summoned her younger son Jacob and said to him: “Listen! Your brother Esau intends to get his revenge by killing you. 43 So now, my son, obey me: flee at once to my brother Laban in Haran, 44 and stay with him a while until your brother’s fury subsides— 45 until your brother’s anger against you subsides and he forgets what you did to him. Then I will send for you and bring you back. Why should I lose both of you in a single day?”
Jacob Sent to Laban. 46 Rebekah said to Isaac: “I am disgusted with life because of the Hittite women. If Jacob also should marry a Hittite woman, a native of the land, like these women, why should I live?”
1 [dm]Isaac therefore summoned Jacob and blessed him, charging him: “You shall not marry a Canaanite woman! 2 Go now to Paddan-aram, to the home of your mother’s father Bethuel, and there choose a wife for yourself from among the daughters of Laban, your mother’s brother. 3 May God Almighty bless you and make you fertile, multiply you that you may become an assembly of peoples. 4 May God extend to you and your descendants the blessing of Abraham, so that you may gain possession of the land where you are residing, which he assigned to Abraham.” 5 Then Isaac sent Jacob on his way; he went to Paddan-aram, to Laban, son of Bethuel the Aramean, and brother of Rebekah, the mother of Jacob and Esau.
6 Esau noted that Isaac had blessed Jacob when he sent him to Paddan-aram to get himself a wife there, and that, as he gave him his blessing, he charged him, “You shall not marry a Canaanite woman,” 7 and that Jacob had obeyed his father and mother and gone to Paddan-aram. 8 Esau realized how displeasing the Canaanite women were to his father Isaac, 9 so Esau went to Ishmael, and in addition to the wives he had, married Mahalath, the daughter of Abraham’s son Ishmael and sister of Nebaioth.
Jacob’s Dream at Bethel.[dn] 10 Jacob departed from Beer-sheba and proceeded toward Haran. 11 When he came upon a certain place,[do] he stopped there for the night, since the sun had already set. Taking one of the stones at the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place. 12 Then he had a dream: a stairway[dp] rested on the ground, with its top reaching to the heavens; and God’s angels were going up and down on it. 13 And there was the Lord standing beside him and saying: I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you are lying I will give to you and your descendants. 14 Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and through them you will spread to the west and the east, to the north and the south. In you and your descendants all the families of the earth will find blessing. 15 I am with you and will protect you wherever you go, and bring you back to this land. I will never leave you until I have done what I promised you.
16 When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he said, “Truly, the Lord is in this place and I did not know it!” 17 He was afraid and said: “How awesome this place is! This is nothing else but the house of God, the gateway to heaven!” 18 Early the next morning Jacob took the stone that he had put under his head, set it up as a sacred pillar,[dq] and poured oil on top of it. 19 He named that place Bethel,[dr] whereas the former name of the town had been Luz.